Archive for July 1st, 2010

July 1, 2010

Our daughter is very fearful…..

by Rod Smith

“Our daughter (10) is riddled with fear. She won’t sleep in her room, get up in the night without one of us getting up with her, or even enter her own room after dark to get her clothes for the next morning. She is able to speak very openly and graphically about her fears. Please shed some light on how we can handle this.”

No blame or shame...

Your child’s fears probably don’t originate with your child. This sounds like family anxiety passed from generation to generation and your daughter is the recipient of unresolved generational anxieties. An effective family therapist will serve you well. He or she will give everyone in the family (as many people and generations as your can gather for a meeting) assignments to explore the family’s unresolved complexities. Reconnecting with each other, being willing to sit down as a tribe will increase the likelihood of calming everyone in the family’s cumulative anxiety, even if at first it appears to make it worse.

Encourage your daughter to write her immediate and long-term goals. Encourage her to plan small steps of growth like being willing to sleep in her own room one or two nights a week. Do not punish her for her worries and concerns – they did not begin with her.

July 1, 2010

I want to get rid of my son’s phone and the Internet – he uses them for porn…..

by Rod Smith

“My son (15) uses pornography on his cell-phone and on his computer. I think my husband and I should get rid of both. My husband disagrees. We are Christians and I will not allow this sort of thing in our house.”

Technology is not the problem. Monitoring your son’s use of technology is a wise thing to do but getting rid of his access to the Internet is unlikely to solve whatever issue your family has with pornography.

No blame or shame...

I’d suggest the three of you sit down and discuss the reasons you and your husband do not condone the use of pornography. Discuss the reasons men and women of all faiths are as prone to its use as those who proclaim no faith. Discuss with your son how the images off a page in a book or an image off a website is exactly that: an image. It is not a person with thoughts, feelings, and rights!

Such a discussion will require preparation and unity between you and your husband – it will require acts of purposeful, planned parenting. Dumping the boy’s phone and severing the Internet is easy – but such radical quick fixes will fix nothing and do nothing to enrich your relationship with your son.

July 1, 2010

Mothers write about their sons and pornography…..

by Rod Smith

I have heard from several mothers of sons (13 to 15) who are toying with Internet pornography. Each mother says her “good boy” who is doing bad things. All but one mother is hesitant to tell the boy’s father because of the father’s health condition or because of how the father will respond. The mothers express love and distress for the children and feel powerless about their sons’ activities. Each letter reads as if the very sky is falling!

it feels like the end....

To the mothers:

This is a tough situation but it is not the end of the world. Your son will emerge from this and be a successful man if he (not you) learns to handle his personal issues with some wisdom and restraint.

While you shoulder this alone you are being secretive (like your son) and are adding fuel his secretive front. Getting father involved allows the family to face a family issue (yes, pornography is a family issue).

Using pornography is not a “normal” phase for all boys. It is an addictive, abusive aberration – but your son will not refrain from its use if pushed, punished, or shamed. He is most likely to resist pornography if he understands why it’s damaging and learns about healthy sexuality from a caring, disinterested, adult whom is respects.